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Frequently Asked Questions

I need a new manway cover.

ANSWER

Contact our Parts Dept. and provide the tank serial number.

Contact Us

How much torque or pressure should be used for tightening manway knobs?

ANSWER

In general, manway knobs are meant to be hand tightened. Contact the Sales or Parts Dept. and provide the tank serial number for information specific to your tank.

Do you provide agitators?

ANSWER

For the tanks we build, SFI can also assist with designing an agitator suitable for your process. We design agitation to provide mixing and blending of a variety of product viscosities. We will provide the agitator and gearmotor or you may choose to provide these components. Learn more here:

Mix Tanks

We need baffles in our tanks; will that be a problem.

ANSWER

We regularly fabricate and install baffles of varying sizes and shapes in the tanks we build.

What types of heat transfer surface to you offer?

ANSWER

Dimpled, half pipe and full internal pipe coil. Click here for more information.

Heat Transfer PDF

What materials do you offer for ladders and platforms?

ANSWER

SFI only provides ladders, platforms, handrails, etc. for tanks we build. Materials of construction are: Stainless steel, carbon steel, galvanized, and aluminum (ladders only – we do not build aluminum tanks).

https://www.stainlessfab.com/ladders-platforms-handrails.html

What gasket material is best for my tank?

ANSWER

Based on your tank serial number, we can tell you what gasket material was provided originally with the tank. SFI doesn’t recommend gasket materials based on application or product. That information must be obtained from your process engineer.

Do you put load cells on the tanks you build?

ANSWER

Yes, when specified, SFI will provide load cells for your tank.

I need a liquid level gauge on my tank. Will that be a problem?

ANSWER

No problem, when specified, SFI will provide a liquid level gauge for your tank.

Do you have experience with magnetic mixers?

ANSWER

Yes, we’ve built many vessels that were outfitted with magnetic mixers. Contact Tank Sales for more information.

What sizes of internal pipe coil do you offer?

ANSWER

Read about our capabilities on our heat transfer surface page.

Heating and Cooling Page

Do you build tanks for cannabis processing?

ANSWER

Until cannabis is legalized in all states in the U.S., we can only build tanks for facilities processing industrial hemp.

Does SFI build aseptic tanks?

ANSWER

We have experience with building tanks according to ASME BPE Bioprocessing Equipment Standard. The BPE Aseptic standard is now the industry-accepted standard for Bioprocessing equipment.

I need a tank with 3 equal compartments.

ANSWER

SFI is an experienced fabricator of stainless steel multi-compartment tanks. Contact Tank Sales to discuss

Contact Us

I need a Charmant tank for wine making.

ANSWER

Yes, SFI builds pressure vessels that can be used for making sparkling wines.

We need some large storage tanks built on-site for our new facility.

ANSWER

Call the office at 1-800-397-8265 or send a message using a website contact form. You’ll be directed to the Regional Manager in Tank Sales that will assist you with your quote.

Stainless Steel Tanks

Does SFI build food grade tanks?

ANSWER

Yes, we have many customers from the food and beverage industries and have built thousands of tanks for them since opening in 1985.

Can I buy an ice cream freezer from SFI?

ANSWER

If you’re looking for the freezers you see in grocery stores, then no we don’t sell that type of equipment. We build custom stainless steel freezer enclosures (tunnels) that are like huge stainless steel rooms designed to house the cooling equipment and conveyors that move the food from one end to the other, quick freezing the food as it is conveyed along.

Freezer Enclosures

Do you have hand sanitizer tanks in stock?

ANSWER

SFI builds custom stainless steel tanks to customer specifications. We have no standard sizes or stock tanks.

What is a stainless steel storage tank?

ANSWER

Simply stated, storage tanks are containers of sizes ranging from small to enormous that are designed to hold/store a bulk material. They can be heated or cooled and can be outfitted with agitation to keep the product stirred. They will have appropriate fittings for the application and if they are large enough, they will have manway(s) to allow personnel access to the interior for maintenance and cleaning.

What is a stainless steel reactor vessel?

ANSWER

A reactor is a process tank that uses temperature to cause the ingredients in the tank to react and change. Often times, reactors are named for the process they perform, such as mixing, distillation, crystallizer, extraction, etc. Reactors are very common in the chemical industry.

What is a stainless steel pressure vessel?

ANSWER

A pressure vessel can be a storage tank or a process tank. Its purpose is to hold the contents (liquids or gases) at a specified pressure above or below atmospheric pressure.

What is a process tank?

ANSWER

A process tank is a vessel designed with the components necessary to complete a portion (or all) of a particular application. There may be several different tanks required in a process line to produce an end product. A process engineer will determine what kind of tank(s) will be needed to produce the desired end result.

I need a jacketed tank that can be heated and then cooled.

ANSWER

SFI regularly builds tanks with heat transfer surface, insulation, and an outer jacket.

Heating & Cooling Solutions

Do you build stainless steel kettles?

ANSWER

The term “kettle” means different things to different people. SFI builds stainless steel tanks used for cooking a variety of products. They can have a dished or hemispherical bottom head. They can be supported on stationary legs, be portable with casters or be mounted in a framework that will allow them to “tip”. Many have an open top or a removable lid. We are a fabricator of custom vessels, so there are many options. We don’t make stainless steel “tea kettles”, mixing bowls or cook pots for the stove top.

Mixing Kettles

Do you build high pressure vessels?

ANSWER

Depending on the tank capacity, the maximum pressure rating can range from 70 psig to 150 psig. Contact Tank Sales for more information.

Sales Personnel & Customer Service Page

Do you build small, portable tanks?

ANSWER

Yes, we build portable custom stainless steel vessels, frequently used in pharmaceutical and food applications, that utilize casters, carts or fork skids for maneuvering in the plant. See examples in the photo gallery.

Photo Gallery

How do I contact a salesman?

ANSWER

Our Sales Personnel page provides a territory map and a bio about each Regional (Sales) Manager. You can contact Tank Sales by submitting a message from that page. We’ll get back to you quickly.

Sales Personnel & Customer Service Page

Do you have a data sheet or quote request I can fill out?

ANSWER

Yes, at bottom of our Documents to Download page.

Downloadable Documents

I’d like to speak to the Purchasing Manager.

ANSWER

Call the office at 417-865-5696. Send an email to eric.melgren@stainlessfab.com. Send a website contact form.

Contact Us

We would like to get on your approved freight hauler list.

ANSWER

Our traffic manager is not currently seeking new vendors. You are welcome to send a message to info@stainlessfab.com and it will be forwarded to him for future reference.

Do you build UL-142 tanks?

ANSWER

UL-142 is a standard that covers atmospheric above ground tanks for storing flammable and combustible liquids. While we have built tanks to UL-142 standards, we don’t “advertise it” because we don’t build carbon steel tanks or fuel tanks and those are typically the vessels that specify UL-142.

Do you build to USDA or 3A standards?

ANSWER

Since our tanks are custom, we can build according to the general guidelines of 3A. These are generally accepted by the USDA for custom installations. However, we do not have a 3A symbol for specific standard products.

Are you certified to build ASME pressure vessels?

ANSWER

Yes, ASME Section VI, Division 1, U-certification. National Board R-certification for repairs.

Certifications & Standards Page

Can you design tanks to API-650 or API-620?

ANSWER

Yes, many of our large field-built tanks are designed based on one of these specifications.

Certifications & Standards Page

I need a 5000 gallon tank. What are the best dimensions for a vessel of this size?

ANSWER

The Regional Manager in Tank Sales can offer rough dimensions, but they are best determined by a process engineer.

I have no idea what kind of tank I need to make my product. Can your engineers write my spec?

ANSWER

SFI Engineers ensure the tank is structurally designed properly but we do not provide process engineering. Once you have that part of the work done, SFI will provide a quote to fabricate the tank(s) either in our shop or on-site at your facility.

Does SFI provide drawings in 3D?

ANSWER

Yes, we generate 3D models and provide the 2D drawings in PDF format by email for approval. Customers may also receive a copy of the 3D model upon request.

The World is Not Flat: SFI embraces 3D design

We bought a tank from SFI 10 years ago and now we want to use it for a different application. Can our tank be rerated for a higher pressure or temperature?

ANSWER

Contact the Parts Dept. for more information. They will need the tank serial number to get started.

Replacement Parts for SFI Tanks

How do I get a copy of my tank drawing?

ANSWER

Contact the Parts Dept. and provide the tank serial number.

Replacement Parts for SFI Tanks

Can you build tanks from Duplex 2205?

ANSWER

Yes, we can including ASME vessels (we have weld procedures and qualified welders).

Materials and Finishes

Can you build tanks from AL6XN or Hastelloy C22?

ANSWER

Yes, we can including ASME vessels (we have weld procedures and qualified welders).

Materials and Finishes

Can I buy stainless sheets, pipe, or angle from you?

ANSWER

We purchase our materials by the job, so we don’t stock and sell raw materials such as this.

Can I buy your scrap material?

ANSWER

SFI has a scrap program in place and we do not sell our scrap material to individuals or other organizations.

What is the best material for food grade tanks?

ANSWER

Material selection is the owner’s decision based on information provided by their process engineer. SFI has manufactured equipment for the food industry from both 304/304L and 316/316L stainless steel, although most are made from 304/304L stainless steel.

Is all 304 stainless steel food grade?

ANSWER

304 stainless has 18% chromium and 8% nickel while 316 stainless has 16% chromium, 10% nickel and 2% molybdenum. Both materials are known for their natural corrosion resistance, which makes them a good choice for many industries, food included, but… Certain foods (and other ingredients) may be better suited for a particular material. For example, 316 S/S may be selected for applications that include salt water. Consult a process engineer or metallurgist with specific questions.

What is the best material for chemical grade tanks?

ANSWER

Material selection is the owner’s decision based on information provided by their process engineer. SFI has manufactured equipment for the chemical industry from 304/304L, 316/316L, Hastelloy, Duplex 2205 and other nickel alloys. A metallurgist must be consulted to determine which material properties work best with specific chemicals.

What is the best material for pharmaceutical grade tanks?

ANSWER

Material selection is the owner’s decision based on information provided by their process engineer and/or metallurgist. Most pharmaceutical vessels we build are made from 316/316L stainless steel for wetted parts and 304/304L for non-wetted parts such as legs, outer jackets, etc.

What kind of gasket should I get?

ANSWER

This falls under the umbrella of your process engineer. They are knowledgeable in this area and will guide you in the selection of the proper gasket for the product in your tank.

Which is better, carbon steel or stainless steel?

ANSWER

Stainless steel is durable, corrosion resistant, easy to clean and generally has a long life. Both materials have their purpose and fill a niche. Carbon steel is much more likely to rust and require repairs compared to stainless, but the upfront expense of stainless steel is higher than C/S. Some products are suitable for one material, but not the other. When a smooth, sanitary interior is an important factor, stainless is the best choice (food, beverage, pharmaceutical). Ultimately, guidance and selection of material is the responsibility of the process engineer or a metallurgist.

Our spec calls for a stainless steel tank with an exterior paint.

ANSWER

We do offer this service, contracted to a local painter.

Do you build tanks with electropolish finish?

ANSWER

Yes. SFI has a production bay dedicated to building pharma vessels with electropolish finish. Learn more on our Pharmaceutical page.

Pharmaceutical Tanks

Can I get a blasted finish on my tank?

ANSWER

SFI has a blasting booth where we offer various media materials to produce the desired finish.

How can I get a manway gasket for my SFI tank?

ANSWER

If you provide us with the tank serial number, we will quote a price and lead time for a new teflon bearing. This is a fabricated part and is not stocked.

Replacement Parts for SFI Tanks

We need some new scraper blades for our scrape mixer.

ANSWER

If you provide us with the tank serial number, we will quote a price and lead time for new teflon scraper blades. This is a fabricated part and is not stocked.

Replacement Parts for SFI Tanks

How quick can I get some replacement parts for my tank?

ANSWER

Very few parts are stocked and many must be fabricated prior to shipping. Buying multiples and keeping stock in your warehouse will ensure “no downtime”. Talk with the Parts Dept. for more info.

Replacement Parts for SFI Tanks

Do you have a catalog that shows your parts and pricing?

ANSWER

Since our tanks are custom designed and fabricated, the tank serial number is key to determining what parts are installed on a given vessel. Replacement parts are quoted as needed, based on the serial number.

I need to replace the spring assist device on my tank.

ANSWER

Contact the Parts Dept. Manager for a quote and provide the tank serial number.

Replacement Parts for SFI Tanks

Can you help me with replacement parts if I give you a tank serial number?

ANSWER

Yes, we should be able to identify what you need from the serial number and then accessing the drawings.

I need some parts for my manway door.

ANSWER

Contact the Parts Dept. and provide your tank serial number and let us know what you need. We’ll send you a quote for the parts and let you know the lead time.

Replacement Parts for SFI Tanks

Can I get a CIP door for your inswing manway?

ANSWER

Contact the Parts Dept. and provide your tank serial number so we can pull the drawing and see what you have. We’ll let you know from there.

Replacement Parts for SFI Tanks

Do you build tanks on-site?

ANSWER

SFI builds tanks both in our shop and on-site at customer facilities.

On-Site Fabricated Tanks

Do you offer electropolish services, such as finishing customer furnished parts?

ANSWER

We consider these RFQs on a case-by-case basis. Contact the Parts Dept. for more info.

Replacement Parts for SFI Tanks

The top of our tank collapsed. Can you fix it?

ANSWER

Yes, there’s a good chance that we can help. You’ll need to speak with the Regional Manager in Tank Sales for your state. He’ll probably ask to see some photos. Send your photos and information via one of our website contact forms and we’ll put you in touch with the right person.

Sales Personnel and Customer Service

Do you have a tank volume chart?

ANSWER

We can provide a tank volume charge on request for SFI tanks.

Can you build ethanol tanks for cannabis processing?

ANSWER

Until cannabis is legalized in all states in the U.S., we can only build tanks for facilities processing industrial hemp.

We need tanks for our plant in South America. Can you build them?

ANSWER

A small number of the tanks we build ship to foreign countries. Contact the Sales Manager or Marketing Manager to discuss your project.

Contact Us

I’d like to get an operation manual for my tank.

ANSWER

Generally, the approval drawing serves as the operation manual. When specified at order entry, a documentation package will be provided.

What’s the biggest tank you can build?

ANSWER

750,000 gallons is about the largest, depending on certain variables. Contact the Regional Manager in Tank Sales for your state. He will be able to discuss this with you in depth.

What’s the smallest tank you can build?

ANSWER

We’ve built portable vessels as small as 10 liters. The small vessels we build are generally complex custom pharmaceutical process vessels and often in multiple quantities.

I bought a tank 3 years ago. Can I get a documentation package for it now?

ANSWER

If you requested a documentation package when you bought the tank, then we should still have it on file and will be able to provide a copy. If you didn’t request documentation when you ordered the tank, then it’s likely that the only documentation we will have will be the drawings. If you bought the tank used, there will likely be a fee associated with obtaining documentation.

Does SFI offer FAT services for their tanks?

ANSWER

SFI supports Factory Acceptance Testing (FAT) by the client for the equipment we manufacture. We want to ensure it meets or exceeds your specification of function and quality before it leaves our facility. When specified at time of order, SFI can provide a full Turn Over Package (TOP/documentation) for the equipment. Additional info can be found here:

Quality Control

Do you provide tank demolition services?

ANSWER

Yes, our field crews have done jobs where they first took down an old tank before building a new tank in the same place.

How do I reach someone in Accounts Payable?

ANSWER

AP@stainlessfab.com or see our contact page for more info.

Contact Us

How do I reach someone in Accounts Receivable?

ANSWER

AR@stainlessfab.com or see our contact page for more info.

Contact Us

How do I apply for a job?

ANSWER

Send your resume or our (completed) application to Human Resources by email, fax, postal mail or website contact form.

Careers

I heard SFI has an apprenticeship program? How do I get in?

ANSWER

Yes, we have an apprenticeship program. Go to our Employment page; then scroll toward the bottom to read about it.

Employment Page

What benefits are offered with employment?

ANSWER

SFI offers full-time employees a competitive compensation and benefits package, including employer-paid health insurance for the employee.

Learn More

Who owns SFI?

ANSWER

Exchange Income Corporation, Winnipeg, Manitoba

Exchange Income Website

When is my tank going to ship?

ANSWER

Our Project Managers ensure the jobs go through the shop smoothly. Contact the PM handling your order for shipping info and assistance.

Contact Us

I’m an employee. Where can I find info that pertains to me and how do I reach HR?

ANSWER

Go to this page:

Employment Page

How do I reach the Field Supervisor working on-site at our facility?

ANSWER

Call the office at 417-865-5696. Send an email to the Field Operations Manager, Jason Crandall, at jason.crandall@stainlessfab.com. Send a message via website contact form.

Contact Us

Is SFI the same company as Precision Stainless?

ANSWER

No, SFI was founded in 1985 by the three original partners. Read more here.

Company History

What does SFI do best?

ANSWER

• Customer service. • Custom designed and fabricated stainless steel tanks; no standard sizes, no tanks in stock. • Larger stainless steel vessels, shop or field built. We can build 100 gallon tanks, but we really hit our stride in larger vessels – shop fab up to about 60,000 gallons; field fab up to 750,000 gallons. • Multiple quantity tank orders. • Cylindrical shaped vessels are most common. • Tanks for chemical, pharmaceutical, food and beverage industries. • Potable water storage tanks. • ASME pressure vessels. • Fermenters and storage tanks for wine and spirits. • Electropolished pharmaceutical vessels of all sizes. • Fully welded stainless steel freezer enclosures. • Spray dryer chambers, bag houses, cyclones and related equipment.

Do you have a product line card?

ANSWER

Yes, please download a copy...

Here

Where are you located?

ANSWER

SFI has one facility, centrally located in Springfield Missouri.

Learn More

What is your address?

ANSWER

4455 W Kearney Street, Springfield MO 65803 This is our mailing and physical address.

Do you accept ACH payments?

ANSWER

Contact AR@stainlessfab.com to receive instructions for ACH payments.

What are your office hours?

ANSWER

SFI offices are open from 8:00 to 5:00 Monday through Friday. Holiday closings are listed toward the bottom of our Employment page.

Learn More

What is your LinkedIn page’s URL?

ANSWER

Here

I need to get a copy of your W-9 form.

ANSWER

Please request a copy by emailing AR@stainlessfab.com.

Do you make floating roof tanks?

ANSWER

No, we don’t build that type of tank.

I’d like to get a quote on some half-pipe.

ANSWER

SFI does not offer our half pipe for sale as a stand-alone item.

I need a tank mounted to a trailer for water or fuel transport.

ANSWER

We do not build tanks that are meant to travel on roads and highways, which are regulated by the DOT.

Do you build tote-style tanks or IBC’s?

ANSWER

There are many companies that build these tanks as their specialty, so we leave it to them. With that said, we do build portable custom stainless steel vessels, frequently used in pharmaceutical and food applications, that utilize casters, carts or fork skids for maneuvering in the plant.

How quick can I get a 12,000 gallon milk silo?

ANSWER

There are several companies that build and stock standard milk silos. This is their specialty, so we leave it to them.

Do you build underground (or above ground) fuel tanks?

ANSWER

We do not build underground storage or fuel tanks. We do build above-ground stainless steel storage tanks per API-650s.

I need a 2000 gallon tank fast. What do you have in stock that might work?

ANSWER

Everything we build is custom, so we have no tanks in stock.

Do you have tanks in standard sizes that we can get quickly?

ANSWER

Everything we build is custom, so we have no standard size tanks.

Can I get bolted stainless steel tanks from SFI?

ANSWER

No, we build only welded stainless steel and higher other alloy tanks.

Do you make double-walled containment tanks?

ANSWER

These tanks are regulated by the EPA’s Spill Prevention, Control and Countermeasure rule (SPCC). SFI has no experience building to this standard. However, we have experience building primary and secondary containment tanks according to UL-142, but ONLY in stainless steel.

Can you make a fuel tank for my boat?

ANSWER

No, we don’t build fuel tanks or equipment regulated by the Coast Guard or EPA.

Do you make fuel tanks for trucks?

ANSWER

No, we don’t build any mobile or trailer mounted vessels that are DOT regulated.

Do you make oxygen tanks?

ANSWER

No, we do not.

Do you make propane tanks?

ANSWER

No, we do not.

Does SFI make heat exchangers?

ANSWER

There are companies that make heat exchangers as their specialty, so we choose not to build them and focus on what we do best.

I need a stainless steel ladder for my swimming pool.

ANSWER

SFI builds stainless steel tanks for industrial service, but we don’t build swimming pool ladders.

I want to buy a steel fire pit. Can you help with that?

ANSWER

SFI builds stainless steel tanks for industrial service, but we don’t build fire pits.

Do you build stainless steel worktables?

ANSWER

SFI builds stainless steel tanks for industrial service, but we don’t build worktables.

I would like to install stainless steel counter tops in my kitchen.

ANSWER

SFI builds stainless steel tanks for industrial service, but we don’t build counter tops.

I need a quote for stainless steel handrails.

ANSWER

SFI provides handrails for the tanks we build. They are not sold as a stand-alone product.

Do you build tanks from carbon steel?

ANSWER

No. SFI only builds tanks from stainless steel and other nickel alloys. (We do use carbon steel for supports and accessories when specified.)

Materials and Finishes

Do you build tanks from aluminum?

ANSWER

No, SFI only builds tanks from stainless steel and other nickel alloys.

Materials and Finishes

Do you sell glass lined stainless steel tanks?

ANSWER

We would refer you to one of our customers that provides glass lined vessels.

Do you sell PTFE lined stainless steel tanks?

ANSWER

We would refer you to one of our customers that provides PTFE lined vessels.

Do you build plastic tanks?

ANSWER

SFI only builds tanks from stainless steel and other nickel alloys.

Materials and Finishes

Do you make tanks from titanium?

ANSWER

No, we do not.

I need to have some material cut to size.

ANSWER

SFI does not offer pre-processing such as this as a stand-alone service.

I need to have some material rolled.

ANSWER

SFI does not offer pre-processing such as this as a stand-alone service.

I need to have a custom stainless steel part made and need 1000 to 1500 pieces. Can you do this in your machine shop?

ANSWER

No, our machine shop currently makes parts only for our own use.

Does SFI install their shop built tanks?

ANSWER

Typically, we do not install our shop built tanks. Our customer's maintenance personnel do the installation or they hire a mechanical contractor to install tanks as well as piping and any other services that need to be done to get the tank up and running.

Do you have any used tanks for sale?

ANSWER

No, SFI sells only new custom fabricated stainless steel tanks. On rare occasions, we may offer a tank for sale that a customer ordered and then cancelled during production. This is not a used tank, it would still be in new, never used condition. In this instance, these tanks would be “advertised” on our LinkedIn page or our Resources webpage.

LinkedIn

Is SFI affiliated with any other tank companies?

ANSWER

No, we are not.

Does SFI make stainless steel IBC tote tanks?

ANSWER

We can build stainless steel tanks such as these but since there are companies that make them all day long in standard sizes, we choose not to build them and focus our efforts elsewhere.

Do you build water tanks for residential use?

ANSWER

The tanks we build are for industrial use and are generally thought to be more expensive than the residential market will bear.

Does SFI build water tanks for fire protection to NFPA 22 standards?

ANSWER

Not specifically. SFI is ASME certified and builds tanks to API 650 and API 620 standards. We have built stainless steel tanks to meet UL-142 as well.

Certifications & Standards Page